State Security and Regime Security: President Syngman Rhee by Yong-Pyo Hong (auth.)

By Yong-Pyo Hong (auth.)

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Extra info for State Security and Regime Security: President Syngman Rhee and the Insecurity Dilemma in South Korea 1953–60

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The pro-opposition Dong-A Ilbo, for example, wrote in May that any cease-fire that allowed Communist forces to remain on Korean territory would become a ‘trap with which the Soviets would fool the US and other democratic nations’. 63 The Korean armistice talks between the representatives of the UN Command, and the Chinese and North Korean Communists finally began on 10 July 1951. Through the first ten months of these difficult negotiations, the two sides agreed on almost all issues designed to bring the war to an end.

When the truce talks reached their final stages around April 1953, difficult negotiations took place between the ROK and US governments: the former was eager to obtain a bilateral security pact before the conclusion of the armistice talks, but the latter was reluctant to give such an explicit security commitment. And if needed, the Americans preferred to settle the issue at least after the end of the war. The tug-of-war between Seoul and Washington lasted almost five months, and the former eventually claimed victory.

Most of them, right and left, opposed separate elections on the grounds that it would result in a permanent division of Korea. However, Rhee and Kim So ˘ng-su, the leader of the KDP, advocated holding elections in the South alone. 27 Facing this situation, the commission resolved to refer the question of elections back to the UN Interim Assembly in February 1948. However, the US, which was now determined to contain the expan- 24 State Security and Regime Security sion of the Soviet Union, proposed to hold separate elections in the part of Korea that was accessible to the UNTCOK.

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